December 19, 2012 2:31pm PT by Jordan Zakarin
Justin Bieber Faces Philippines Ban for Mocking Losing Boxer
With its favorite son knocked out, the Philippines is striking back -- at Justin Bieber.
Following Manny Pacquiao's loss to Juan Manuel Marquez by KO in a fight in Las Vegas earlier in December, Bieber posted several photos that mocked the 34-year old eight time champion. One featured "Smooth Criminal" era Michael Jackson standing over the fallen boxer, with the words "Manny Are You Okay?" above him; the other had Simba, from the Disney film The Lion King, nudging him like he had his dead father.
The photos outraged politicians in Pacquiao's home country, who issued a statement condemning the posts.
"Mr. Bieber should have known that the Hon. Pacquiao has reached his stature as such as a result of sheer hard work, determination and firm belief in God, and despite such stature best exemplifies humility and grace even in defeat,” it said.
Further, they are petitioning for a formal apology, with the threat that Bieber could become a "persona non grata" in the country.